08 June 2011

LaPorte's front door



Anyone who has traveled into LaPorte on highway 35 knows this scene well. There are probably very few really spectacular barns that form gateways into modern cities. LaPorte is fortunate to have maybe one of the most unusual barns at their southern edge.....the edge of the prairie.


The Door Prairie Barn was constructed in 1882 for Marion Ridgway, whose grandfather had owned the property clear back to 1831. John Jeffrey built the nine-sided barn, but it appears to have been his only attempt at such a project. Nine sides? I guess there were plenty of options for which corner to, er, uh....well. Multi-sided barns are pretty rare and had just come into fashion when this was built. Round barns came a bit later with the height of their construction occurring in about 1905. The Kesling Family of LaPorte restored the Door Prairie Barn in 2001, and it has been placed on the National Register of Historic Places.

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Thought provoking, what is Plymouths front door? The unfinished Comfort Suites? The weed infested medians on North Michigan Street?

hoosier reborn said...

I think you touch on an important issue. Plymouth's north gateway falls short of the desired outcome of the medians and when combined with the carnage of messy commercial buildings and signage all the way out to the $20 million dollar bypass we have some real issues to overcome. It used to be that Plymouth's south side was its premier gateway...but one certain developer has pushed compacted vinyl boxes right up to the road and hey, let's really screw things up by putting a gas station in a non-commercial area. I bet the building commissioner doesn't have a clue that it is supposed to follow neighborhood commercial standards-heck, I bet the guy doesn't even know those standards exist!

Anonymous said...

The Medians look the way they do becuase of a deliberately childish effort by the park board. The oldest members of the board continue to pout because the previous Mayor made their department responsible for median maintenance. So there is purposeful neglect! The current Mayor hasn't got the political will in an election year to force the issue and get the things properly taken care of. What the park board is hoping is that they will be paved over!!

hoosier reborn said...

Odd how lack of political will in Plymouth actually works against the citizenry. I don't think it is a lack of political will as it is just a lack of leadership-something that has affected Plymouth in every facet for far too long. And I don't see that things can ever change.

Anonymous said...

I think it is time to lay this at the feet of the guy who buys our local leaders and let him solve our problems directly instead of letting him front this endless bunch of pin-heads!